Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Disease of humans where the agent is found in any of several animal disease reservoirs such as sheep, goats, and especially avian species; an influenza-like systemic infection when transferred to humans. Symptoms include pneumonia and fever of unknown origin. The infection is caused by gram-negative Chlamydia psittaci. Ornithosis was a significant killer of humans in 1929-30; transmitted to humans by inhalation of the dust of dry fecal droppings. Aka psittacosis, chlamydiosis, and parrot fever.

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From "Dictionary of Nursing and Individual Health Care"